Solar Polar are developing an innovative, low-cost, solar powered, diffusion-absorption cooling system for air-conditioning, refrigeration of vaccines and food storage in the sunbelt region. To enable Solar Polar and their academic partners at Imperial College London to test and optimise the diffusion-absorption refrigeration system in their underground London-based laboratory, Energy Transitions have worked to develop a real-time evacuated tube simulator.

The simulator comprises python script which models an evacuated tube collector in the computer. Physically, it consists of a laptop (for running the python script) linked to a control signal generator which regulates the power, via a solid state relay, into cartridge heaters with built-in Thermocouples that can mimic the heat output from an evacuated tube. The simulator can operate in real-time, meaning a typical day can be simulated in the laboratory, by taking a weather data file and generating a control signal to input the exact amount of heat for that time of day.

Using the simulator, Solar Polar have been able to optimise the thermodynamic performance diffusion-absorption cooling system before field trials.
Imperial College London Solar Polar Further Information Conference Paper

Presenting the project at the IEA SHC conference in Abu Dhabi